Being a fanatic foodie, I have a top ten list of restaurants that I feel I must eat at once a week or minimum, a few times a month or life feels like it’s missing something. There’s a hole in my food soul.
Hey, we all have our vices. One of mine is the total dining experience – being around the best people in my circle, at a local eatery with a warm, professional staff, and succumbing to heavenly aromas, gorgeous presentations, and mouth watering fare. Hopefully, there’s some wine in the mix somewhere.
It’s rather difficult these days – uncommon at least – to find a place that is a perfect “storm” of these elements. When I have a superlative dining experiences, I have the intention to visit these places as often as possible, like visiting a loyal, old friend. I enjoy the banter that comes with being a frequent, regular customer and I particularly enjoy feeling like I’m valued for it.
Recently opened Ming Sushi on 774 Purchase Street in downtown New Bedford is exactly one of these places. An eatery where you will have a total dining experience – with all the sights, sounds, aromas that you would expect from one of the best. The owners are husband and wife Kexi and Mei Chen, Mei’s sister-in-law Miya Lin and brother-in-law Jia Lin making Ming Sushi a family-owned business. To say I was excited when I heard a sushi place was opening up downtown is an understatement. Actually, my excitement was accompanied with suspicion.
You see, some people take politics or religion quite seriously. Others place tattoo collecting, activities with adrenaline rushes, or their wine on a high pedestal. Me? I take sushi very seriously. The art and science of making sushi is itself a serious endeavor. It takes 10 years or more to even get to the point where you can serve sushi and in fact, one’s first 3 years as an apprentice is spent making rice. Just rice.
So each plate isn’t just about how stunning the display is. Each mouthful isn’t just about the delicious factor. Each bite is about an experience. You are tasting a piece of sushi that at a minimum took a decade to reach your mouth.
I say this with complete and total zeal: Ming Sushi is one of the finest sushi establishments on planet earth. Don’t be fooled by the fact that they have an “All You Can Eat” offering? The sushi that you receive is as good as anywhere I have ever been – and I’ve tried it all over the world. Any hardcore sushi-head can tell you from the first bite how fresh the seafood is, how perfectly cooked and moist the rice is – and at the end of the day, how darn delicious it is.
This is New Bedford, one of the top seafood ports on the planet – there should have been a sushi eatery in the heart of downtown a long time ago. On top of that, the seafood should ALWAYS be served fresh. There is no excuse for serving processed seafood – like many places do. Ming Sushi serves the freshest and that makes a huge difference is taste.
Moreover, I’d like to add that this goes far beyond sushi. In spite of the name, Ming Sushi has a full menu of “non-raw” items:
- Tempura – vegetables or seafood battered and deep fried, served with various sauces.
- Hibachi – grilled meats served with mixed vegetables, fried or white rice with Miso soup and salad.
- Teriyaki – meats or vegetables covered in a sweet, salty sauce and served with Miso Soup, and fried or white rice.
- Katsu – breaded, deep fried chicken cutlet served with a tangy, sweet, flavorful sauce.
- Udon noodle – thick wheat noodles served pan fried or hot pot style, served with Miso soup or salad.
- Bento Box – A full lunch “box” of katsu, teriyaki, or hibachi meat (chicken, beef, shrimp, salmon) or vegetables served with soup, salad, California Roll, Spring Roll, fried or white rice.
In addition they have Miso soup, fried rice, jalapeno poppers tempura, and more. Gyoza (dumplings), spring rolls, and eight types of salad round out the menu. So that means if you are a sushi junkie, like me, yet have some friends who are more reserved in their dining habits, you don’t have to leave them in the dust and eat without them.
There is a wide variety of appetizers, and of course you can order your sushi a la carte. These options are available for lunch or dinner or just any old time. The popular “All You Can Eat” lunch is $14.95 (7-12 years old – $7.99, 3-6 years – $3.99) and the dinner service is $19.95 (7-12 years old – $10.99, 3-6 years – $4.99)
Ming Sushi is a place that takes your dining experience seriously. Here is a restaurant that in less than a year’s time has made my top ten list. If online testimonials (45 – 5 star reviews out of 50) won’t convince you, take a walk by Ming Sushi and see how packed the place is!
I love that Ming Sushi is a family owned business and it certainly has that “vibe.” When I asked Mei what attracted her to New Bedford she stated, “New Bedford was our first pick – we love the downtown area because it is full of historic architecture and we think New Bedford has a lot of potential. We wanted to add something new, something fantastic and thought Japanese food would add more variety to this city!”
Ming Sushi just does Japanese perfectly. I look forward to seeing the sister’s smiling faces on a regular basis. Mmmmmm….I’m getting hungry. Time for some Teriyaki steak. I’ll see you there!
774 Purchase St
New Bedford, Massachusetts 02740
Phone: (508) 999-1113
*Reservations are appreciated and necessary if the party is over 6
Monday – Thursday: 11am-9:30pm
Friday -Saturday: 11am- 10:30 pm
Holidays: 11am- 9:30pm (dinner served all day)